the reference game for the World Cup

No respite for football fans. The kick-off of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar (November 20 to December 18) coincides this year with the release of the latest edition of Football Manager, the time-consuming football management simulation, sold for more than one million copies last year.

Available from 8 November on PC, Mac, Xbox, mobile and for the first time on PS5, FM 2023 puts you in the shoes of a football manager responsible for all aspects of daily club life, tactical transfers, like an England manager .

The success of this series published by Sports Interactive, born in the 2000s with the title of The coach (Where is it championship director), it is very related to its realism. It references hundreds of thousands of players, educators, coaches and executives, from the stars of the game to anonymous people from small clubs. Their qualities and potential are so accurately reflected by the developers that some professional clubs do not hesitate to use them for their own recruitment.

Champions League added to database

Like every year, the database is updated with numbers and evaluations updated with the latest movements starting in October. The new rules of financial fair play, the geopolitical constraints linked to Brexit and the five replacements inherited from the pandemic are taken into account. FM 2023 welcomes European competition rights this year which bring an extra touch of realism with the official dressing and anthems of the Champions League, Europa League and Europa League Conference.

However, not all leagues are licensed. While Ligue 1, the Bundesliga and almost all of Serie A are featured, FM 2023 has no rights to the Premier League or La Liga. This results in generic team names and no official player photos. But the game can count on a very prolific community which offers patches to download for free to fill these gaps and optimize the game with all the official graphics.

This edition is obviously marked by the FIFA World Cup in Qatar which interrupts the season from November 20th. In the match we played, it was Brazil who won the supreme title, largely eliminating England in the final (4-2). The road for the French ended in the quarterfinals against the English (1-0, after extra time). However, the Blues, this time with Karim Benzema and the surprise Maxime Lopez, had overlooked the previous matches, with in particular a quadruple from Mbappé against Australia and a demonstration against Tunisia.

In FM 2023 the World Cup starts in the best way for the Azzurri

Credit: Football Manager 2023

For the rest, FM 2023 introduces several new features that also reinforce the realism of the game: a new menu is appearing to obtain a medium and long-term view of one’s workforce and to fill future gaps in certain positions in future recruitments. Scouts are more regularly sharing their analysis and tips on players to watch and young stars in the making to strengthen the squad. It is also possible to discuss directly with a player’s agent to define the terms of a possible transfer before making an offer to his club.

Daily, communication with fans is now an area not to be overlooked. The requests of the fans will have to be taken into consideration in the conduct of the club, under penalty of seeing their rating drop with the leaders and being quickly on the razor’s edge. In game the animations have been slightly improved but the graphics engine is starting to look a bit dated, with overall average graphics, although this allows the game to be accessible to a maximum of machines.

FM relies on its results but remains the benchmark

FM 2023 once again stands out as the premier football management simulation. The title promises an almost infinite duration thanks to its unrivaled database and makes some significant additions to the module, in particular with the addition of the official licenses of the European Cup. The other novelties seem anecdotal to say the least, so much so that the difference with the previous edition is not exactly evident: downloading a database could still be sufficient this year to update the previous edition, FM 2022, sold for around 20 euros , with up-to-date numbers. We’re also still waiting to see the game welcome its first women’s teams.

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